Idea management
  • Franck van Diest

Blog - Fail to innovate is failing to survive

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That is a bold quote. Innovation is often classified as difficult and only for the Apple’s and Microsoft’s from this world. And therefore, one of the reasons most companies fail to innovate. But you know what, innovation can be fairly easy. You just need great ideas, lots of them. What to look out for?

Innovation is about focus

Focus is about saying no to 100 things. This famous Steve Jobs quote is well known and very true. Ideas are not the problem, picking the right idea for your business is what really matters. Therefore, focus on the best ideas. And while you do that, keep an open mind. You are not the only person in the company that knows it all. Great ideas often come from the most unexpected sources. Give them time to get traction. Give them time to grow and get better. Preferably by allowing and listening to feedback from your workforce.

Benefit from your biggest asset: the workforce.

Encourage an open culture

If you really want to capitalize your workforce and engage them is your business’ innovation, you must encourage an open culture. Failure is a lesson, not something to worry about. There are no bad ideas, your people need to feel that in order to participate comfortably. Give them space on sharing and developing their great ideas and they (both people and idea) will flourish.

What helps to achieve an open culture is to stimulate the creation of internal networks. It is not a secret that innovation (and knowledge by the way) flows much faster through a network in comparison to a highly structured and closed hierarchical structure. If you are curious about this topic, than Peter Hinssen’s book ‘The Network Always Wins’ is nice read for you.

Another important thing is time. People putting effort in sharing and developing ideas is costing time, although limited. Give it to them. Innovation is the single most important topic in business continuity. Fail to innovate is failing to survive in this highly competitive and rapidly changing times. When will your disruptive market changer arise? Think about it.

Ask more questions!

Yes, as simple as that. Start your sentences with the words “What if” or “Why is it that”. You’ll be surprised how many people have great answers to your questions. And those answers could be perfectly good ideas. And that ideas could very well be your greatest innovation ever.

Asking questions is good. It’s about curiosity.

Support and develop ideas

So, culture and time, that is important. On to the practical side. How do you provide support to your workforce to share and develop their ideas? Consider an internal platform, maybe as part of your intranet or Digital Workplace. A platform that is easy to use and is easily accessible.

Also, consider launching a supportive program. In this program you can outline what is needed for ideas to be highlighted in the company, or perhaps even receive coaching and funding to get to the next step with that idea. Remember, the innovation funnel is a tricky one, full of obstacles.

That is where we come in. With Debble Ideation, you get an Office 365 SharePoint based solution that fits seamlessly in your internal communication and collaboration environment. A platform that comes out-of-the-box, is highly user friendly so everyone knows how to use it.

Debble Ideation is an open platform that supports the creation of independent, lightweight, collaboration sites to develop ideas. With Debble Ideation you start creating your open minded innovation network straight from the start.

This powerful product is offered for a ridiculous low price of € 500 per month regardless of your company size. This includes support, maintenance and an evergreen roadmap.

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